At the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Keystone Pennsylvania, we know that one of the most effective ways to educate people about mental health conditions and overcome the stigma associated with them is for people to hear or tell stories of lived experience. Stories That Heal is a unique twist on this concept and will consist of pop-up events that feature stories of lived experience through various artistic means.
The first stage is our Stories That Heal author series, a partnership between NAMI Keystone Pennsylvania and City of Asylum in which we will be hosting four special events that will highlight four local authors who live with mental health conditions at the City of Asylum Bookstore. At each of the events, all of which will be free to attend, one of our featured authors will read an excerpt from their book, followed by a moderated question and answer portion in which the author will be able to discuss their lived experience and answer audience questions.
Our goal for Stories That Heal is to host social events that fight stigma, spread hopeful messages of recovery and resiliency, and foster connections. Living with mental health conditions can feel isolating, so we want to provide the opportunity for people to meet others whose lives have also been touched by mental health conditions. We also hope to inspire people who aren’t as aware about these conditions to become more empathetic and supportive toward those who have them. Every time someone shares or hears a story of lived experience, we are that much closer to ending the stigma and discrimination that people who live with mental health conditions face.
Funded by Pittsburgh, PA (April 2018)